NDP filibuster: half a Bible of blather


Mid-way through the NDP filibuster of back-to-work legislation, I posted a leader board based on the number of words spoken. At that point on Friday morning, about 97,000 words had been uttered.

Now we’ve finally got the official transcript from Hansard, we can crunch the numbers with a bit more accuracy. (Keep in mind this is based on the English version of Hansard — statements made in French have been translated.)

Total number of word’s spoken by all MPs: 432,143.

That’s about 55 per cent of the length of the King James Bible and 77 per cent of the length of Tolstoy’s War and Peace.

Charlie Angus proved himself the Filibuster Filler. He spoke more than 11,000 words, more than any other MP.

To put that in context, Angus spoke for 41 times the length of Abraham Lincoln’s Gettysburg address. (But about 2,600 words short of the speech given by Edward Everett, who opened for Lincoln at Gettysburg with a two-hour chinwag that was forgotten in the wake of Abe’s oratory.)

Angus’s words in the House were also, cumulatively, seven times longer than Martin Luther King’s “I have a dream” speech on the Washington Mall.

During the debate, the phrase, “Mr. Speaker,” was used 1,087 times.

The phrase, “Canada Post”: 287 times.

“rights”: 548 times.

“outrageous”: 21 times.

Most words uttered, by MP:

Charlie Angus (NDP)    11,014
Dany Morin (NDP)    10,028
Yvon Godin (NDP)    8,954
Christine Moore (NDP)    8,680
Kevin Lamoureux (Liberal)    8,620
Chris Charlton (NDP)    8,589
Peter Julian (NDP)    8,368
Jack Harris (NDP)    7,652
Rodger Cuzner (Liberal)    7,476
Pat Martin (NDP)    7,204
Libby Davies (NDP)    6,942
Elizabeth May (Green)    6,241
Thomas Mulcair (NDP)    5,931
Randall Garrison (NDP)    5,781
Jinny Jogindera Sims (NDP)    5,690
David Christopherson (NDP)    5,661
Robert Chisholm (NDP)    5,571
Sana Hassainia (NDP)    5,445
Brian Masse (NDP)    5,268
Carol Hughes (NDP)    5,182

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5 thoughts on “NDP filibuster: half a Bible of blather

  1. I see not too many of the Quebec NDPers were allowed to speak. I guess a lot of them don’t speak English.

  2. No, the list isn’t exhaustive of all NDPers who spoke. The MPs Benskin, Leblanc and Brosseau, for example, all spoke well and to the point but did not make the list (which cuts off at 5,000 words or so).

  3. Remove all the prepositions, define/indefinite articles and the repeated words … and then count the “words”.

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